Firm pioneers pro bono crowdsourcing

Crowdfunding may be used to improve access to justice, after one law firm has acted on the first crowd funded pro bono case.

Firm pioneers pro bono crowdsourcing
Crowdfunding may be the future of improved access to justice, after Salvos Legal became the first firm to use crowdfunding on a pro bono case.

On a highly compelling, public interest case, the lawyers at Salvos Legal have tapped into the humanitarian side of the community.  

Using crowdfunding, the firm has raised money to help a Bangladeshi man obtain an Australian visa and remain with his wife, after his attempt to prove his genuine refugee status unrepresented, failed. 

Salvos Legal believe the man to be a genuine refugee.  Despite this, he is full time-carer to his wife, who suffers from a number of serious health problems.

Having launched a project only six days ago, the community has already pledged over $5,000 of the $11,500 needed to settle disbursements incurred and allow him to stay with his Australian wife.

“The power of crowd is just enormous,” said Salvos Legal managing partner Luke Geary, adding that the profile of the case had been widely pushed on social media since launching.

“This is a real option.
 
“There have been some other cases in the past where people have great case but not been able to run them because you’re up against a deep pocketed defendant and you don’t have any money.  The typical firms that run things on a no win no fee basis sometimes can’t carry disbursements, for example.”

In Australia, crowdfunding for a social cause remains a free market, despite increased regulation for crowdfunding used for capital raising.

The crowdfunding has been facilitated by act., a division of Community Sector Banking.  Amanda Watt, head of banking and business at act., said that the project would make a profound difference to the lives of this man and his family, adding that the couple need the community’s help as much as compassion.

“act. is getting behind this project because the actions of a few people towards raising these funds can make such a huge difference,” she said.

“We support the work of Salvos Legal Humanitarian, who help the disadvantaged in society who often face huge battles.”

Free newsletter

Subscribe to our FREE newsletter service and we’ll keep you up-to-date with the latest breaking news, cutting edge opinion, and expert analysis affecting both your business and the industry as whole.

Please enter your email address below and click on Sign Up for daily newsletters from Australasian Lawyer.

Recent articles & video

Cyber attack targets major firm – report

IP firm strengthens partnership with key hire in Brisbane

Barristers in England and Wales at a “breaking point” – survey

Law Council renews call to raise the minimum age of criminal responsibility

Law reform body recommends changes to SA law and practice

Veteran litigator boosts Simmons & Simmons Hong Kong disputes resolution team

Most Read Articles

Cyber attack targets major firm – report

NewLaw pioneer to lead KPMG Law's legal operations transformation services arm

Baker McKenzie advises US company on cross-border healthtech acquisition

Being a bookworm got this HFW senior associate into the courtroom